Bleak House Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Tulkinghorn informs Lady Dedlock that ___________.

2. Why is Mr. Jarndyce unable to end the lawsuit?

3. Mrs. Pardigle is focused on ___________.

4. Richard has now decided to pursue ___________.

5. Regarding his career, Richard seems ___________.

Short Essay Questions

1. Richard Carstone has a strange way of seeing money. How does Esther illustrate his propensity to rationalize his spending?

2. Describe the general scene in the Chancery hearings on the Jarndyce suit, and London, as it is set by Dickens in the first chapter. Is there anything attractive or alluring about the ambience of either?

3. How could Esther feel responsible for Mr. Boythorn's sadness? In addition, what does this imply about Esther?

4. Who is Mr. Vholes in this story? What is his role in Richard's life?

5. Jarndyce v. Jarndyce has finally come to an end, with all the money at issue having been swallowed up in legal costs. Why does Richard Carstone die at this time?

6. Dickens brings poverty and wealth together to create intrigue in the story's plot. What is young Jo's involvement in the plot and why is he important?

7. What is interesting about Smallweed demanding money for the letters he once had in his possession?

8. Discuss the ending of the story. What is Dickens' intention when he allows Esther to live on happily after all that has taken place?

9. Why has Chesney Wold become quiet and dismal? How is it different now from before?

10. Discuss Mr. Guppy's pursuit of Esther as he follows her around the city. How would this be viewed today?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In Chapter 22 of Bleak House, Mr. Bucket makes reference to the "fever houses" in London. Research the epidemics of typhus and smallpox that swept through England in the 1800s. What was the statistical impact, how were the diseases treated, and how were they brought under control?

Essay Topic 2

Dickens' writing style in Bleak House often resembles or illustrates his subject matter. Discuss this idea, and if you agree that this is the author's intent, provide examples.. Does this literary device help to drive home Dickens' points? Is there a name for this method? Give examples and quotes that illustrate how Dickens' writing mimics his subject matter.

Essay Topic 3

At one point in Bleak House, Richard Carstone intends to be an MRCS, or "Member of the Royal College of Surgeons." Research this institution and determine whether it still exists and its current status.

(see the answer keys)

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